Agricenter International in Memphis has announced the hiring of nationally-known researcher John Bradley as director of research, replacing the retiring Jamie Jenkins.

In a way, Bradley is returning to the roots that launched his career 24 years ago as an advocate of the no-till system of crop production — he’ll be working outdoors in the heat of summer, tending to rows of cotton, corn, soybeans, rice and other crops.

He’ll also be a spokesman for Agricenter’s unique position as a research farm and educational facility nestled in the middle of a sprawling urban landscape in east Memphis.

“John Bradley will be a big asset to Agricenter as we work to continue Jamie Jenkins’ efforts to take our research and development program to the next level,” said Bud Hughes, an Agricenter board member and chairman of the Farm and Research Committee. “His experience includes field research, working with private and public cooperators, field technology education, publishing scientific papers and articles in the trade and public speaking.”

Bradley will solicit, plan and complete on-farm research trials with southern field crops. He will also organize the AgTechnology Field Day, held every other year, on the off-years of the Milan No-Till Field Day, in Milan, Tenn., which ironically, Bradley grew into one of the pre-eminent field day events in the country while employed as superintendent of the Milan Experiment Station for 14 years.

For the past 10 years, Bradley has been employed in the private sector with Monsanto Company, and most recently with Beltwide Cotton Genetics.

Bradley has received numerous national awards for his leadership in no-till and conservation tillage, most recently a 2006 induction into the Farm Press Hall of Fame for Conservation Tillage Cotton Success.

In 1993, Bradley was the first recipient of the “Outstanding Achievement in the Promotion of No-Till Award” presented by the West Tennessee No-Till Farmers Association and BASF Corporation. The same year, he received Milan’s “Man of the Year” award from the Milan Chamber of Commerce.

e-mail: erobinson@farmpress.com